Bridge-Gate jury sent home early on 3rd day of deliberations; no verdict reached

Bridge-Gate defendant Bridge Kelly (left) walks with her attorney Michael Critchley (right). The jury was sent home early Wednesday because attorneys needed to work out a

Bridge-Gate defendant Bridge Kelly (left) walks with her attorney Michael Critchley (right). The jury was sent home early Wednesday because attorneys needed to work out a "legal issue." No verdict was reached. (11/2/16)

NEWARK - The jury in the Bridge-Gate lane-closing trial was sent home early on their third day of deliberations, but no verdict was reached.

The defense and prosecutors would only say the jury was sent home because of a legal issue, but would not elaborate further.

Both sides were seen going back and forth into the courtroom Wednesday, but those meetings were closed to the public.

The jury is weighing the fate of two former allies of Gov. Chris Christie charged with scheming to punish a Democratic mayor who didn't endorse the Republican governor in 2013.

Bridget Kelly and Bill Baroni are charged with conspiracy, wire fraud, civil rights violations and misusing the bridge. The most serious charge carries a 20-year maximum prison sentence.

They testified that they thought the closure of access lanes was part of a traffic study.

Jurors on Tuesday appeared to be wrestling with the law surrounding the top two counts in the indictment.

Kelly’s attorney filed a motion Wednesday to re-instruct the jury on one of their questions. The jurors asked whether the defendants could be found guilty of conspiracy if they hadn’t intentionally done it to punish the mayor of Fort Lee.

The judge ruled that no motive was needed to be found guilty on conspiracy charges. Kelly’s attorney clashed with the judge, and said that this was the wrong answer.

It was not immediately known if this is the issue that sent the jurors home early.

Deliberations are expected to resume Thursday morning.

The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.

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